The discovery of the Wabar meteorite impact craters began initially as a quizzical adventure led by the British Arabist, explorer, writer, and scholar - Harry St John Bridger Philby. Philby was once an MI6 intelligence officer and spy, which translated means he had a real penchant for politics and espionage. Among his many interests, including ornithology and wildlife, he was a bit of a polymath, and decided to go in search of the lost city of Ubar, in 1932. Ubar was just not some obscure city but was also called the "City of the pillars" - a lost city, region or tribe mentioned in the Holy Qur'an. Philby had converted to Islam and had a vested interest in finding Ubar. It is no surprise that someone with such a mottled background and sense of adventure would find such an important scientific discovery as the Wabar craters.
The Quran describes Ubar as being destroyed by God for defying the Prophet Hud, and Philby transliterated the name of the city as Wabar - and that is how Wabar and its craters got it's name. Philby was attentive to Bedouin legends and heard of an area called Al Hadida ("place of iron" in Arabic) that had ancient ruins and pieces of iron the size of a camel. Philby finally arrived at the described area in Arabia's Empty Quarter or Rub' al Khali in February, 1932, and found black glass, chunks of white sandstone, and iron meteorites. He mapped the area, thought it was volcanic in origin, and brought back specimens for study to the British Museum, in London. Analysis proved that the meteorites from Wabar are 90% iron and 5% nickel, with the rest consisting of various elements, including copper, cobalt, and 6 ppm of iridium, an unusually high concentration, which established it as a meteorite impact site.
This Wabar iron meteorite with crust ships with a description of its fascinating history and original tag.
Size: 17mm H X 10mm W X 8mm D; Weight: 2.83 grams; stands and cube not included.
This is a great hard to find meteorite with an incredibly interesting history to add to a serious geological collection.